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On the Town: Trivia fundraiser benefits adult literacy program

St. John Fisher College wins 2014 Brain Game Trophy; LVR nets $23K

Brighton Town Court Judge Karen Morris served as honorary judge of the competition – as she has for several years. However, this was her first year to win a raffle prize. Bonnie Martin

Brighton Town Court Judge Karen Morris served as honorary judge of the competition – as she has for several years. However, this was her first year to win a raffle prize. Bonnie Martin

And the winner is: Literacy Volunteers of Rochester – thanks to the many local businesses who sponsored teams for the Oct. 16th Brain Game. Out of the 17 teams signed up for the live trivia competition, the team from St. John Fisher College took home the trophy at the end of the night.

WHEC TV10’s Nikki Rudd and Jennifer Mobilia kept the contest lively, reading the questions and seeking team answers or life-lines from the audience. The crowd of nearly 200 at the Radisson Riverside was enthusiastic about the competition and the hors d’oeuvres passed throughout the evening.

St. John Fisher College also had a savvy team that survived several rounds of competition and took no chances on the “wager” in the final round, handily winning the 2014 Brain Game trophy.

The other organizations sponsoring teams included: Arnold Magnetics, Avalon Document Services, Bond Schoeneck & King PLLC, Brighton Securities, EFP Rotenberg, Friends & Foundation of the Rochester Public Library, Harter Secrest & Emery LLP, Insero & Co., Lacy Katzen LLP, Monroe Community College, Monroe County Library System, Nixon Peabody LLP, Trillium Health, the Triumph Group, Thomson Reuters and Underberg & Kessler LLP.

The 2013 Brain Game winners were from Underberg & Kessler, and they held strong through the first rounds of the competition, beating Nixon Peabody LLP in Round 1, and the Friends & Foundation of the Rochester Public Library in Round 2. St. John Fisher knocked them out of the game in Round 3 – but it seemed they still had a great time.

A dedicated team of volunteers worked on preparing the questions, starting on the annual fundraiser in late spring. The categories included: literature, car knowledge, random fandom, national parks, Shakespeare, Rochester history, baseball, Rochester ghost stories, geography, craft distilling, mythology and the Hunger Games.

The Monroe Community College team was having fun. Players included Dr. Ann Kress, Shelley Fess, Mark Sample and Steve Farringdon. Bonnie Martin

The Monroe Community College team was having fun. Players included Dr. Ann Kress, Shelley Fess, Mark Sample and Steve Farringdon. Bonnie Martin

Sample questions included: In what city does the book 1984 by George Orwell take place? a) London; b) Berlin; c) Paris; d) Moscow. The Continental Divide goes through which of these parks: a) Rocky Mountain National Park; b) Bryce National Park; c) Grand Canyon National Park; C) Guadalupe Mountains National Park.

Brighton Town Judge Karen Morris again served as honorary judge for the competition, and Volunteer Legal Services Project Executive Director Sheila Gaddis assisted as timekeeper.

In addition to the participating teams, another 10 tables of guests were on-hand to offer life-lines and to participate in the raffle and auction. All prizes were donated to Literacy Volunteers, allowing 100 percent of the raffle/auction money to go directly to the nonprofit organization.

The three auction items included: five nights in a NYC condo, donated by Nannette Nocon and Karl Wessendorf; one JetBlue ticket anywhere they fly; and four seats in the Martino Flynn Suite at Ralph Wilson Stadium for the Bills vs. Jets game this November. The raffle included donations from Wegmans (two $500 gift cards); box seats to the Rochester Broadway Theatre League’s upcoming presentation of Cinderella; and a suite for 16 at a spring 2015 Red Wings game.

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield and St. John Fisher College were gold sponsors of the event and Martino Flynn was a silver sponsor.

If you guessed “a” in both sample questions above, you might want to consider a team for next year’s Brain Game fundraiser. The event is held every October. More information about LVR can be found at www.literacyrochester.org, or by calling (585) 473-3030.

– Photos by Bonnie Martin

More library folks joined the competition as the Friends and Foundation of Rochester Public Library supported a team. Pictured here are Dick Hamilton and Ned Davis. Bonnie Martin

More library folks joined the competition as the Friends and Foundation of Rochester Public Library supported a team. Pictured here are Dick Hamilton and Ned Davis. Bonnie Martin

LVR President Ray Martino, left, pauses for a photo with WHEC TV10’s Jennifer Mobilia, center, and Nikki Rudd, who emceed the event and kept the questions flowing. Bonnie Martin

LVR President Ray Martino, left, pauses for a photo with WHEC TV10’s Jennifer Mobilia, center, and Nikki Rudd, who emceed the event and kept the questions flowing. Bonnie Martin

EFP Rotenberg sponsored a team and enjoyed the social aspects of the evening. Pictured here are Charles Stebbins, Ryan Weir, Terry Burns, Chris Johnston and Courtney Schenkel. Bonnie Martin

EFP Rotenberg sponsored a team and enjoyed the social aspects of the evening. Pictured here are Charles Stebbins, Ryan Weir, Terry Burns, Chris Johnston and Courtney Schenkel. Bonnie Martin

Defending their 2013 championship, the team from Underberg & Kessler LLP included Jillian Farrar, Jenifer Castaldo, David Tang and Leah Tarantino. Bonnie Martin

Defending their 2013 championship, the team from Underberg & Kessler LLP included Jillian Farrar, Jenifer Castaldo, David Tang and Leah Tarantino. Bonnie Martin